After my husband and I retired, we knew that we would need new health care coverage, as we would no longer be employed. We also knew that we would need coverage that was affordable, as we were both switching over to a fixed income. After conducting a great deal of research on all of the plans available to us, we landed on Medicare Advantage.

Charlene Love

When we first enrolled in the program, we did so because we thought Medicare Advantage coverage would give us the best bang for our buck. Given that we were retired, having a plan that wouldn’t exhaust our savings was important.

But since being enrolled, we have learned that Medicare Advantage does far more than most plans – even though it costs the least!

A few years ago, my husband had to go to the hospital, and he ended up staying overnight for several days, which we weren’t expecting. Naturally I wanted to stay at the hospital with him, so when he was finally cleared to go home, we didn’t have anything to eat in the fridge! The last thing I wanted to do was go to the grocery store, but I knew we needed to have something. As I was begrudgingly heading out to the store, I opened our front door and found that we had had groceries delivered right to us!

It turns out that an additional benefit of our coverage was that if you had an unexpected and extended hospital stay, you could get food delivered to you when you got home. It’s the little benefits like this one that make the world of difference – and that you wouldn’t get with a typical plan.

Medicare Advantage really goes above and beyond to provide the benefits seniors need. Whether it be integrated vision, dental, and hearing benefits, prescription drug coverage, wellness programs, fitness classes, or the food delivery we received, Medicare Advantage strives to ensure comfort and peace of mind for seniors. And for all of these benefits, Medicare Advantage has some of the lowest premiums out there, with the average payment being just $19 per month.

Unfortunately, there are now conversations in Congress that could result in the Medicare Advantage program losing funding. If these cuts were to go through, it is likely that premiums will rise, which could make some benefits, or even complete plans, out of reach for seniors who currently depend on them. 

Considering that nearly 800,000 seniors in Georgia rely on Medicare Advantage coverage, any changes to the program could have a huge impact on our community. The last thing seniors want is to see their health care coverage taken away.

I hope that Sens. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff and all of Georgia’s representatives in Congress do what is right and protect Medicare Advantage. Seniors count on the affordable benefits of Medicare Advantage to keep us healthy, and now we are on counting on our elected officials to protect them. 

Charlene Love, B.A., MPM

Charlene Love is a managing partner with TCH Consultants, an Atlanta project management and sales training company.